TO quote the repeatedly uttered sentiment of an audience member behind me at the opening night of Le Nor [The Rain], it is “so clever”.
Much more than your average night at the theatre, the Made in WA Perth Festival co-commission, by theatre maker collective The Last Great Hunt, was years in development and is evident in the result.
Filmmaking is at the forefront as you watch a faux foreign movie filmed live on stage, complete with behind the scenes cinematic techniques and surtitles for the invented hybrid language, with ancient Germanic origins spoken by all actors.
The action is beamed simultaneously on a large film screen where the highly skilled performers and co-creators in Tim Watts (director), Adriane Daff, Arielle Gray, Chris Isaacs, Gita Bezard, Jeffrey Jay Fowler and Jo Morris make movie magic look easy, and hilarious.
With the narrative taking a backseat, the film is set on the island nation of Solset, somewhere in the northern seas, where times are tough for the once successful metropolis that is now suffering drought and severe water rationing.
It follows the lives of those living in an apartment building, suffering the hardship of drought, then followed by rain and flood – an adversity all too real given the recent situation in Townsville.
As the world falls apart around them, there is romantic heartbreak, new beginnings and a lot of Phil Collins.
Stylised in a 1980s aesthetic, the choice lends for fashion flashbacks, big wigs and copious amounts of blue eye shadow.
The Last Great Hunt already has a reputation for engaging and innovative works and Le Nor [The Rain] only confirms the team is a theatrical force to be reckoned with.
To use the language of Solset, Le Nor [The Rain] is “lekker”, which translated in English means “awesome”, right to the “Fin”.
The season continues at PICA Performance Space until February 24 before performances at Mandurah Performing Arts Centre, March 1 to 3.
Four and a half stars